Leah Still, the cancer-stricken daughter of Bengals defensive lineman Devon Still, was honored Thursday night during a game between Cincinnati and Cleveland. Between the first and second quarters, the four-year-old girl was brought onto the field at the Bengals’ Paul Brown Stadium, wearing a pink jacket over a hooded sweatshirt in the team’s orange color. Still was also wearing a surgical mask to protect her from the chilly night air.
On the field, the Bengals presented a check for $1,349,582.63 to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, in order to help Still and other pediatric cancer patients. The money was raised through sales of Devon Still’s No. 75 Bengals jersey.
From the start of September, when it first became available, through Oct. 20, the team said it sold almost 15,000 replicas of the lineman’s jersey. That made it the 11th best-selling jersey of any NFL player, even going back seven months. Devon Still was on the field, as the Bengals’ defense awaited the start of the second quarter, during the ceremony involving his daughter. So was Browns quarterback Brian Hoyer, who came over and spoke to the lineman before offering a hug.
The game marked the first time Leah had been able to see her father play. She arrived late Wednesday night from Philadelphia, where she has been receiving treatment since June at that city’s Children’s Hospital.
Before the game, Leah shared a moment with the Bengals cheerleaders, whom she had said she wanted to meet. They presented her with her own cheerleading oufit, complete with her father’s No. 75 on the front.
Leah is fighting Stage 4 neuroblastoma, a rare from of pediatric cancer. Doctors have given the four-year-old a 50-50 chance of survival.